Talk politics at your own peril, govt warns clerics

Friday December 29 2017


By The Citizen Reporter

Dar es Salaam. The government has warned clerics against using their pulpits to ‘talk politics,” as they risk having their churches de-registered.

According to a statement, released yesterday and signed by Permanent Secretary in the ministry of Home Affairs, Major General (retired) Projest Rwegasira, authorities have been concerned by the repeated habits of religious leaders to comment on political issues in their sermons in contraventions of the constitutions they sent to the Registrar of Religious organisations.

All registered societies operate according to the terms and conditions of their registration that are provided for by the Societies Act, cap 337 of 2002, which among other things, require them not to engage in activities that are not in included in their constitutions, the statement noted.

“No single religious organisation brought a constitution to the Registrar that includes commenting on political issues as an activity of the organisation,” the statement reads in part.

The statement added that commenting on political issues goes against Regulation No 7 of the Societies Act, 2002, which says, among other things, that any religious organisation cannot change the content of its constitution without the permission of the Registrar.

“The Registrar wishes to remind religious organisations which contravene conditions of their registration that they risk being registered in accordance with section 17 of the Societies Act,” the statement further reads.